World Cup Group E Betting Tips & Guide

Ismail Ansar

World Cup 2022 - Group Stage - Group EWorld Cup 2022 - Group Stage - Group E
PosClubPWDLGDPTS
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Japan badgeJapan
3201+16
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Spain badgeSpain
3111+64
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Germany badgeGermany
3111+14
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Costa Rica badgeCosta Rica
3102-83
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Spain

2010 winners Spain are one of the two big teams in Group E who are expected to qualify for the knockout stages of the tournament. Their win over the Netherlands in the final in South Africa 12 years ago is La Roja’s only success in football’s biggest tournament, and since being reappointed national team manager three years ago, Luis Enrique will be looking to take his side far in the tournament after uncharacteristically poor showings in both 2014 and 2018.

With a deadline of November 13th to submit final squads, Spain haven’t submitted theirs yet, but there are some players who we will definitely see in Qatar. The likes of Pedri, Gavi, Cesar Azpilicueta, Sergio Busquets, Alvaro Morata, Thiago and Ferran Torres are the men that can expect to start every game, but Enrique will also have some selection headaches – such as whether to take players such as Aymeric Laporte, Mikel Oyarzabal, Brahim Diaz, Rodrigo and Koke.

Enrique will also have to decide whether or not he will take an ageing Sergio Ramos, as well as facing a tough choice in who will be his starting goalkeeper out of Unai Simon or Robert Sanchez.

Spain finished top of Group B in World Cup qualifying, picking up 19 points as they won six out of their eight matches. What will worry Enrique is that despite the fact Spain came up against the likes of Kosovo, Georgia and Greece, the Spaniards never looked convincing, often winning marginally by one or two goals. Ferran Torres managed to get four of Spain’s 15 qualifying goals, with Morata, Pablo Sarabia, Dani Olmo and Carlos Soler all chipping in with two each.

Under the stewardship of an experienced manager like Luis Enrique, Spain could go far in this tournament, but because their squad is not of the highest quality in comparison to other large nations, it will prove difficult for them to make it as far as the final. Spain are currently priced at 10/11 to win the group, and at 8/1 to win the entire tournament.

Germany

It’s been eight years since Germany last won football’s biggest prize, when Mario Gotze scored an extra-time winner to break Argentina's hearts back in 2014. That was the fourth time that Die Mannschaft have won the World Cup, and with Germany always a danger in international football, they can’t be written off as potential winners again in Qatar.

Like Spain, the four-time runners-up still haven’t submitted their final 26-man squad yet, but we all know what players will definitely be there - Manuel Neuer, Thomas Muller, Serge Gnabry, Joshua Kimmich and Antonio Rudiger can all expect to have a starring role under Hansi Flick.

Flick can also call on a vast array of good players to fill out the rest of his squad – such as Ilkay Gundogan, Leon Goretzka, Niklas Sule, Kai Havertz and Robin Gosens. Flick even has the option of calling up several of the country’s most talented younger players such as Jamal Musiala, Florian Wirtz and Nico Schlotterbeck if he wanted to. However, Timo Werner does unfortunately miss out, having sustained an ankle injury at the start of this month.

Germany finished top of their qualifying group with nine wins from ten matches, with their only defeat coming against North Macedonia in March of last year. With a group containing the likes of Liechtenstein, Armenia and Iceland, the Germans were expected to easily wrap up the group as winners, which is exactly what they did. And in such an easy group, the Germans found a lot of joy in front of goal. Gnabry, Gundogan and Werner all bagged five goals each, Leroy Sane got four, and both Kai Havertz and Thomas Muller scored three each, with Germany ultimately scoring 36 goals and conceding just four.

Germany will face much tougher tests when the tournament starts, but they have a great squad and in Hansi Flick, they have a great manager. Flick has tasted defeat just once since taking the job as manager, and considering his exploits at club level, could he do the same at international level? Germany are currently priced at 11/10 to win Group E, and 10/1 to win what would be their fifth World Cup.

Costa Rica

Qatar 2022 will be the sixth World Cup appearance for CONCACAF’s Costa Rica, who gave their best showing at the 2014 edition. Los Ticos surprised everyone by topping their group ahead of Uruguay, Italy and England. They beat Greece on penalties in the round-of-16, but would, unfortunately, be knocked out by the Netherlands in the quarter-finals.

After a poor showing in 2018, Costa Rica will be hopeful of causing another upset by beating one of the group’s big two to a knockout-round place.

Costa Rica have submitted their final squad, and as we have seen in previous years, it contains names that fans of English and European football will be familiar with. Legendary goalkeeper Keylor Navas (107 caps) will be making what is probably his last-ever appearance at a World Cup tournament, with the shot-stopper approaching 36. Everton fans will recognise left-back Bryan Oviedo (75 caps), while Arsenal fans will remember forward Joel Campbell (118 caps). And at 37 years of age and with 144 caps to his name, former Fulham man Bryan Ruiz will also be playing in Qatar in what is surely his last World Cup.

Elsewhere, reliable performers such as Celso Borges (153 caps), Francisco Calvo (75 caps), Oscar Duarte (69 caps), Yeltsin Tejeda (72 caps and what is his third World Cup) and Kendall Waston will all be making the journey to Qatar as well.

Costa Rica finished fourth in CONCACAF qualifying for this tournament, managing seven wins and four draws from their 14 matches. Because they finished fourth, it meant that they would need to play in one of the inter-confederation play-off matches for the last available spots. They came up against the OFC representative in New Zealand, and a goal after just three minutes by Joel Campbell ensured that Cost Rica would once again be going to another World Cup.

The world’s 31st-ranked side are not particularly on anyone’s mind in terms of a dark horse pick, but considering what they did in 2014, Cost Rica could certainly spring some surprises once again. They are currently priced at 7/1 to qualify from Group E, and an outsider at 25/1 to win the group.

Japan

It will be a seventh consecutive World Cup appearance for competition stalwarts Japan, who made their first tournament appearance back in 1998. But this time they will want to get out of the group having never done so previously, always alternating between group-stage and round-of-16 eliminations.

Manager Hajime Moriyasu faces a tough task in getting his team out of a very tough group, but the current Japan squad is one of the strongest in years.

Goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima, at 39, will be playing in his last ever World Cup tournament, having also appeared at the last three for his country. Takehiro Tomiyasu, Yuto Nagatomo and Maya Yoshida are sure to start in defence, and both Takumi Minamino and Daichi Kamada will be key in terms of chance creation for the Japanese.

upfront there is a wealth of options for Moriyasu to call upon, with young Takefusa Kubo available alongside more experienced players like Takuma Asano, Kaoru Mitoma and Daizen Maeda.

FIFA’s 24th-ranked country made a shaky start to their qualifying campaign, losing their first two games against Oman and Saudi Arabia. They did go on to win seven of their remaining eight games to ultimately ensure qualification. Both Minamino and Yuya Osako scored ten goals in the qualification progress to help their country to another World Cup.

It is unlikely that Japan will advance to the knockout stage due to the superiority of both Spain and Germany, but the Samurai Blue will certainly try to cause an upset and claim a memorable win – they are currently priced at 3/1 to qualify from the group.

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